Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common cali

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Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common cali

Postby Rollins » Sun Jul 26, 2020 6:25 pm

Hey guys im back from working for a bit, last 8 months living in hotels and military bases. So i couldn't buy bullets/ powder etc before they disappeared.

So I am looking to find a powder or 2 that will cover the bases and I can keep stocked in decent amounts to avoid this problem in future.

In the past I bought varget as it got rave reviews and works in a good selection of calibers, (shot nice in my 308 with 150 corelocks) but it is harder to find at local stores and more expensive and usually is the first to disappear in times like these.

I know there is no magic powder that does it all, but id like to keep it simple starting out with just a few powders to keep stocked and loads worked up for now. I dont compete or do bench so id rather have good powders I can use in a few guns over 1 powder for one gun and load kinda thing

Varget and 4895 seemed to be listed in most of these but were not easily obtainable and again usually sold out. From my new lymans 50th book and online it looks like IMR 4060 is a good powder for 308 and can do other calibers but seems slower, though it seems to be somewhat available now.

Since I am in Michigan where the temps can change a lot, id like a temp stable powder so I can reduce variations due to temp changes and avoid any over pressure if I happen to be shooting on a really hot day or go somewhere warmer.

I dont plan to do anything crazy in regards to super heavy or light bullets, max velocity at the edge etc Basically try to replicate or do better than the good quality boxed hunting loads.

Primary is a tika t3 in 308. But plan to get a varmint caliber in the future, and a semi auto 308, also tempted by the 7.62x55 Swede. My brother has a 308 as well as a 243 and my dad has a 300 savage.

If possible i would love a powder to fill all these roles but more than likely will have to have a few powders.

I figure stock up on 2-3 powders to be covered. Ie a powder for the deer guns. Ones for varmint cal and maybe one for the Semi auto as gas guns seem to need different loads than bolt or single shot. Plus a few smaller amounts for specific guns IE lil gun for my 450 bushmaster etc

What do you guys and girls use? Ideally something available most places and not super expensive.
The sportsmans warehouse, bass pro, local places seem to mostly carry IMR hodgeden and alliant brands. I did see a can of some powder called precision rifle that was supposed to be varget like but i had never heard of it so I didn't buy.
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby offrink » Sun Jul 26, 2020 9:37 pm

I load many calibers with 5 powders. Blue dot, lil gun, Varget, power pistol, and ar comp. I have plenty of other powders but those are what I buy in 5 or 8 lb jugs.
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby Hoot » Sun Jul 26, 2020 9:57 pm

offrink wrote:I load many calibers with 5 powders. Blue dot, lil gun, Varget, power pistol, and ar comp. I have plenty of other powders but those are what I buy in 5 or 8 lb jugs.


AR-Comp is one of the most well kept secrets even though its coming up on 10 yrs old. It only varies 20fps over a temperature range of -20 to +160F ! It was developed for the modern military and works well in 223, 6.5G and 308 to name a few. Right behind that, like many shooters, I like Varget. The new formulation of Reloader 16 is also good. Actually several kinds of the Alliant Reloader series of powders have been reformulated to fight copper buildup and have better temperature stability than earlier version of them. They certainly deliver good velocity at reduced pressure.

Its hard to find a powder that effectively spans such a wide range of 450b bullet weights as Lil Gun.

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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby Rollins » Mon Jul 27, 2020 7:14 pm

Sadly they all seem to be sold out of the ones listed.

Its things like imr 4064, 4831, some alliant and others i have not heard of that I saw on the shelf or online still.

Hopefully this will all blow over and i can start to stock up.
I plan to get some 8lb jugs of the 2-3 main rifle powders and a few cans of special ones like lil gun and pistol if i start to reload and some red dot for reduced and shotgun load. I was hoping to be able to go to some gun shows to avoid the hazmat and shipping but the Rona has cancled them all.

Problem is even when there wasnt a panic varget , 4895 etc were hard to find around here. I was hoping there would be some others that were just as good or close to it that are easier and or cheaper to get.
.
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby PRKL8R » Mon Jul 27, 2020 8:27 pm

Personally I like 4064. Have used it for most of the time I've reloaded. It was my go to powder for .308 &.300 savage for bullets 150gr. and above. Have used it in .243, .358win.,.35 Whelen with good results. Have also loaded it in .30-06 and .300 magnums when 4350 or4831 were scarce. I still use it for 7mm-08,.308, and .358Win. I wouldn't hesitate to lay in a decent supply of it. I've been reloading 42 yrs.and admit I'm alittle reluctant to try a lot of new powders. tend to stick to what works for me.
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby Rollins » Mon Jul 27, 2020 9:18 pm

Thanks. Yeah 4964 listed in a few calibers in the lymans manual but other than that it doesn't seem real popular from what i have googled.

How is the temp sensitivity? Being in Michigan I can see some big temp swings. The one big downside people seem to mention is it meters horrible but I weigh and hand dip so it shouldnt be a problem. I guess if you were loading for a semi auto and wanted to load a lot I could see where you want a powder that drops well.

How does it do in the varmint calibers? I have heard it can be tricky with the smaller cases since the sticks are long.

I am tempted to get it if i see at sportsmans warehouse or something but it's about 180 bucks for a jug so dont want to buy something and regret it.

Figure id ask here since here guys seem very knowledgeable and experienced
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby PRKL8R » Mon Jul 27, 2020 10:01 pm

I never tried 4064 in anything smaller than .243. Yes it is a pain to meter cutting kernals et al,but works once you learn to be consistent on the charge handle. If I were you would only get 1lbto start and when those other powders become available try em. Are there any reloaders in your area that you may be able to share components ? As far as temp sensitivity I never had issue with any of the IMR powders. Have had some with the Win,Hodgen,and the old Hercules(Alliant) ball powders; but boy I love how they flow thru the meter!
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby Hoot » Tue Jul 28, 2020 7:07 am

It totally eludes me why two adjacent regions can have such different availability issues. Here in the Twin Cities, most powders are available. We have a thriving reloading and shooting community but I couldn't begin to compare the challenge in terms of demand, to the reloading community in a more populous state. No doubt about the fact that our numbers would be much smaller than Michigan. Now quality primers are a different issue. They've been drying up over the course of the year. That's pretty much nationwide. Sometimes small LGS can surprise you with what they have if you go in and ask them.

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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby Rollins » Tue Jul 28, 2020 10:03 am

I dont really have an local gun stores near by, closet is like 45 min to an hour in grand rapids or lansing.

I was in the area last week and stopped in at the sportsmans warehouse and they were out of almost everything.in the past i have stopped in there, cabelas gander mountain(before they closed) and usually they had powder but the varget usually gone along with 4895 etc

The smaller gunshops sometimes had them in but only 1lbs and usually more expensive.

I did pick up 1000 federal large rifle primers for 25 bucks though. Thinking i should gave bought 2 boxes though. Sadly they didnt have any small rifle ones for the bushmaster and for pistol only had some magnum primers
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Re: Selecting good powder for 308 but works in other common

Postby plant_one » Tue Jul 28, 2020 10:50 am

if you can find SR primers, you're probably going to be limited on how many they'll let you buy

most of the stores i've talked to have a 500ct limit, and some lower than that. there's a huge crunch right now which is also why you're having trouble finding powder.



its not quite as bad as post sandy hook ... YET... but its getting there.


if this nonsense doesnt die down in the next month or so.. its going to get a LOT worse the closer we get to the election.


heck.. june was the largest background check for gun sales ever on record with nearly 4 million (3.9x) - which broke the previous record set in march 2020, and was 71% higher than june 2019.

according to Small Arms Analytics, they figure that translates into approx 2.4 MILLION gun sales.

we'll have the July numbers in a few days... so hold on for another potential record setter.
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